May 31, 2011

Old Friendships

So here I am, above palm trees, so straight and tall. You are smaller getting smaller but I still see you.

One of the most hurtful feelings a person can go through is realizing you're just not as close friends with someone as you thought. Last night I was discussing this with someone I consider my best and closest friend and how we've both found ourselves in situations like that. Then today on Reddit someone posts an open question to AskReddit asking what the most dickish way in which a friend showed you're not as close as you thought. If you're feeling sad about having lost friends this will break your heart.

Naturally I started thinking about the friends I left behind and the friends who left me behind. Just as naturally, the one I'm mourning now was much, much more than a friend. When I decided to cross the line from friend to more I knew I could potentially lose him, or at least the relationship we used to have. We swore and promised and proclaimed no matter what we'd always be friends, and through our many disappointments we would express hurt but always end with more declarations of friendship. Except that now it's becoming clear that we're not, in fact, friends anymore.

On the one hand, this realization has been helping me finally begin, for real, the forgetting. I think in the last 6 months I got everything out of my system, including telling him I do, actually, want him to move here. I didn't lay everything on the line, but I got close enough, and... nothing. My mourning now is centered around the realization that not only won't he move, but he's completely content. Strangely, this I'm OK with. This means I can stop hoping or wondering or thinking what if and open my eyes to the rest of the world. Knowing things won't change, while a little heartbreaking, is at least somewhat of an answer to my always questioning mind. It's something concrete to mourn.

But on the other hand, I recognize that I don't want to forget. If I've lost the friendship entirely it's OK.The time we spent together as much more than friends was worth losing the friendship, as fucked up as that might sound. That time meant a lot to me, and it isn't something I want to forget.

Of course I hope the time will come back someday when we can be friends again. I hope by then I'll have gotten over my hopes and imagined jealousies and will be able to accept him as a friend, and I hope he'll do the same for me. I hope that the closeness we once had won't be forgotten forever, and I hope he doesn't become one of those friends that vanishes forever.

Unlike the thread on Reddit, neither of us did anything hurtful enough to cause a lost friendship, so maybe our story won't end up like the stories I read. I guess at this point only time will tell.

1 comment:

  1. I read that open question on Reddit, and honestly, I don't think it was that bad. It seems like that person is just getting caught up in the histrionics of it all. I mean, c'mon, you moved away and you two seem to have lost contact; so of course, you're not going to be as good of friends as you once were.
    The whole not-answering e-mails should have been a sign. Unwillingness to communicate is one of those things that show how important someone is to you. I always keep a mental note of these types on interactions with friends, so I can gauge how they perceive the friendship. To quote an Anberlin album title, "Never take friendship personal."